First Day

On Saturday, I called a taxi to take me to one of my English classes. I was waiting in the lobby of my building when two taxis arrived at the same time. Confused, I walked outside and was greeted by the driver of the second car. With this greeting, I assumed he was my driver and walked towards his car, but he quickly pointed me towards the first. I got in the car then he looked at me and said, "Señorita, do you speak Spanish?"

I confidently answered, "Yes, of course."

He then told me that my driver was new to the company and might need assistance with the directions to my location. I assured him that I knew the way and it would be no problem for me to direct him. He thanked me for my help and then we were on our way.

As we drove off, I asked my driver, "Señor, is this your first week?"

"No, señorita, this is my first day. My first service on my first day."

I couldn't believe it, for the first time in Lima history, I knew more than a Peruvian. As he struggled to call the base and enter the correct information, I gave him directions and told him the fee. I settled into the taxi and took a look around me. This is my home. Not only is this my home, but this has been my home. So much so that I am now familiar with customs and systems. In that taxi, I was the expert. Sure, it only lasted for a brief ten minutes but in those ten minutes I lost my expatriate naivety and I was the pro.